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The #DigitalCivilRevolution and #CivilLeadership as the only answer – Public Sector Executives Helsinki

13 November 2019

On November 13, 2019 Steven P.M. de Waal (PhD) will lecture about ‘The #DigitalCivilRevolution and #CivilLeadership as the only answer’ at the forum “Public Sector Executives: Transforming Finland’s Public Sector” by Management Events Finland.

As citizens call for improved public services, the world governments are moving to modernize their legacy operations for greater efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and better quality of life. The Public Sector Executives forum gathers top executives from the state and local government departments and major public organizations to discuss the latest public sector trends and solutions, such as IoT and automation. Gain deep insights from expert talks, and exchange thoughts with industry’s leaders through peer-to-peer matchmaking sessions at the event.

Dr. de Waal’s main message, following his book ‘Civil leadership as the Future of leadership’ (Amazon 2018), will be that it’s not just digitalization or new technologies that are challenging or changing things, but that the main change is not technological, but in the attitude and power of citizens themselves. So, following the disruption of markets, they are now disrupting democracy and public services. We certainly need new public leadership to ‘harness’ this disruptive power.

How to adress people’s worries in a sensible, considerate and convincing way

People now have the tools to organize themselves, as we can see in all kinds of public protests, like the Yellow Vests in Paris or in Hong Kong and the Middle East. Elements that are causing these disruptions and are explained in the book are: there now is a permanent public grandstand, the public opinion is for the first time of and by the people themselves, people can organize themselves from the bottom-up in short time and massive numbers (he calls this #swarmbehaviour) and runner-ups are winning elections because they better know how to use these new technologies. The public protests are based on the new technologies because now an individual or a small group can organize their supporters online within a few days to show up in public with a multitude of 10.000 people. To do that they no longer need representative organizations or unions. It is a fast and massive movement, but it is now organized from the bottom up by individuals who are spokesmen for a bigger unrest or concern. Instead of just focusing on this protest and the reason they are on the streets, we should certainly also focus on the new leadership that is necessary to listen to and address their worries in a sensible, considerate and convincing (leadership!) way!

As his audience in Finland will be of Public Sector Executives they will certainly recognize the deep turmoil and unrest that is going on in the public and political domains. Of course they will be very interested in Dr. de Waal’s basic analysis and advice about the new civil leadership that is now required. Looking forward to this opportunity!

Download Dr. De Waal’s presentation here

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